The White House announced on Thursday (8) that Israel had agreed to implement a four-hour “military” truce in the northern Gaza Strip to allow people to escape the hostilities.
White House spokesman John Kirby said: “The Israelis informed us that there will be no military operations in these areas during the truce period and that this operation begins today.”
Kirby added that the pauses, which will be announced three hours in advance, were the result of discussions between US and Israeli officials in recent days, including talks held by US President Joe Biden with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Kirby called the news “a step in the right direction.”
He added: “We think these are important first steps here and obviously we want them to continue as long as they are needed.”
According to CNN, the rest periods will take place in specific neighborhoods and neighborhoods.
Israel stressed that the truce does not mean the end of the conflict with Hamas.
Army spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Richard Hecht said: “I repeat, there is no ceasefire, there is no ceasefire. What we are doing, in this four-hour window, are tactical and local pauses for humanitarian relief.”
The US State Department said that two humanitarian corridors will allow people to flee combat zones in northern Gaza, adding that it is necessary to expand humanitarian supplies and aid in areas where people are moving.
Also according to the White House, Biden is pressuring Netanyahu to take a humanitarian truce and called for a “pause of more than three days” in the conflict.
An American official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told Reuters that the directors of the CIA and the Israeli Mossad met in Doha with the Qatari Prime Minister to discuss a possible hostage deal. Qatar has acted as a mediator with Hamas in the past.
CIA Director Bill Burns and Mossad Chief David Parnia are in Doha “to conduct trilateral negotiations with the Qataris” and are working on “the details of a possible humanitarian truce, which could include the release of hostages and the entry of more aid into Gaza.” A source told Agence France-Presse, requesting that his identity not be revealed. He added, “In recent days, negotiations have made progress toward reaching an agreement.”
In Paris, officials from about 80 countries and organizations met to coordinate humanitarian aid to Gaza and find ways to help injured civilians escape the siege, now in its second month.
Jan Egeland, Secretary-General of the Norwegian Refugee Council, said before the White House announcement: “Without a ceasefire and lifting of the blockade, indiscriminate bombing and wars, the hemorrhage of human lives will continue.”
Israel and its main ally, the United States, say a complete ceasefire would benefit Hamas.
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